Community Networks and Sustainability: a Survey of Perceptions, Practices, and Proposed Solutions

Micholia, P., Karaliopoulos, M., Koutsopoulos, I., Navarro, L., Baig, R., Boucas, Dimitris, Michalis, M. and Antoniadis, P. 2018. Community Networks and Sustainability: a Survey of Perceptions, Practices, and Proposed Solutions. IEEE Communications Surveys & Tutorials.

TitleCommunity Networks and Sustainability: a Survey of Perceptions, Practices, and Proposed Solutions
AuthorsMicholia, P., Karaliopoulos, M., Koutsopoulos, I., Navarro, L., Baig, R., Boucas, Dimitris, Michalis, M. and Antoniadis, P.
Abstract

Community network (CN) initiatives have been around for roughly two decades, evangelizing a distinctly different paradigm for building, maintaining, and sharing network infrastructure but also defending the basic human right to Internet access. Over this time they have evolved into a mosaic of systems that vary widely with respect to their network technologies, their offered services, their organizational structure, and the way they position themselves in the overall telecommunications’ ecosystem. Common to all these highly differentiated initiatives is the sustainability challenge. We approach sustainability as a broad term with an economical, political, and cultural context. We first review the different perceptions of the term. These vary both across and within the different types of stakeholders involved in CNs and are reflected in their motivation to join such initiatives. Then, we study the diverse approaches of CN operators towards the sustainability goal. Given the rich context of the term, these range all the way from mechanisms to fund their activities, to organizational structures and social activities serving as incentives for the engagement of their members. We iterate on incentive mechanisms that have been proposed and theoretically analyzed in the literature for CNs as well as tools and processes that have been actually implemented in them. Finally, we enumerate lessons that have been learned out of these two decades of CNs’ operation and discuss additional technological and regulatory issues that are key to their longer-term sustainability.

KeywordsCommunity networks, sustainability, incentive mechanisms
JournalIEEE Communications Surveys & Tutorials
ISSN1553-877X
Year2018
PublisherIEEE
Accepted author manuscriptCOMST-00238-2017.R1.pdf
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.1109/COMST.2018.2817686
Publication dates
Published online21 Mar 2018
Published21 Mar 2018

Related outputs

The state and the development of an information society: Greek policy and experience
Boucas, Dimitris 2017. The state and the development of an information society: Greek policy and experience. British Journal of Sociology. 68 (3), pp. 556-580.

Radio Spectrum Battles: Television Broadcast vs Wireless Broadband and the Future of PSB
Michalis, M. 2016. Radio Spectrum Battles: Television Broadcast vs Wireless Broadband and the Future of PSB. International Journal of Digital Television. 7 (3), pp. 347-362.

The relation between content providers and distributors: Lessons from the regulation of television distribution in the United Kingdom
Michalis, M. and Smith, P. 2016. The relation between content providers and distributors: Lessons from the regulation of television distribution in the United Kingdom. Telematics and Informatics. 33 (2), pp. 665-673.

Focal points of European media policy from inception till present: plus ça change?
Michalis, M. 2014. Focal points of European media policy from inception till present: plus ça change? in: Donders, K., Pauwels, C. and Loisen, J. (ed.) The Palgrave handbook of European media policy Basingstoke and New York Palgrave Macmillan. pp. 128-142

Thirty years of private television in Europe: trends and key moments
Michalis, M. 2013. Thirty years of private television in Europe: trends and key moments. in: Donders, K., Pauwels, C. and Loisen, J. (ed.) Private television in Western Europe: content, markets, policies Basingstoke and New York Palgrave Macmillan. pp. 37-55

Balancing public and private interests in online media: the case of BBC Digital Curriculum
Michalis, M. 2012. Balancing public and private interests in online media: the case of BBC Digital Curriculum. Media, Culture & Society. 34 (8), pp. 944-960.

Assessing the British Public Value Test: benefits, limitations and challenges ahead
Michalis, M. 2012. Assessing the British Public Value Test: benefits, limitations and challenges ahead. International Journal of Media and Cultural Politics. 8 (1), pp. 13-30.

La política europea de comunicación y su impacto en los medios radiodifusión (“European media policy and its impact on broadcast media”)
Michalis, M. 2011. La política europea de comunicación y su impacto en los medios radiodifusión (“European media policy and its impact on broadcast media”). in: Campos Freire, F. (ed.) El nuevo escenario mediático Seville Comunicación Social. pp. 29-47

Introduction: whither the public interest in the new political economy?
Michalis, M. and Barnett, S. 2010. Introduction: whither the public interest in the new political economy? Interactions: Studies in Communication & Culture. 1 (2), pp. 167-170.

Is the public interest under threat? Public service broadcasting, market failure and new technologies: the view from the European Union
Michalis, M. 2010. Is the public interest under threat? Public service broadcasting, market failure and new technologies: the view from the European Union. Interactions: Studies in Communication & Culture. 1 (2), pp. 185-202.

EU broadcasting governance and public service broadcasting: between a rock and a hard place
Michalis, M. 2010. EU broadcasting governance and public service broadcasting: between a rock and a hard place. in: Iosifides, P. (ed.) Reinventing public service communication: European broadcasters and beyond Basingstoke Palgrave Macmillan. pp. 36-48

Governing European communications: from unification to co-ordination
Michalis, M. 2007. Governing European communications: from unification to co-ordination. Lanham, USA Lexington.

Regulation of internet telephony in the United States and the European Union
Michalis, M. 2004. Regulation of internet telephony in the United States and the European Union. Computer and Telecommunications Law Review. 10 (6), pp. 142-152.

Institutional arrangements of regional regulatory regimes: telecommunications regulation in the European Union and the limits to policy convergence
Michalis, M. 2004. Institutional arrangements of regional regulatory regimes: telecommunications regulation in the European Union and the limits to policy convergence. in: Bohlin, E., Levin, S.L., Sung, N. and Yoon, C.H. (ed.) Global economy and digital society London, UK Elsevier. pp. 285-300

The internet: a challenge to public service broadcasting?
Hills, J. and Michalis, M. 2003. The internet: a challenge to public service broadcasting? in: Miller, T. (ed.) Television: critical concepts in media and cultural studies Routledge.

The debate over universal service in the European Union: plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose
Michalis, M. 2002. The debate over universal service in the European Union: plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose. Convergence: the journal of research into new media technologies. 8 (2), pp. 80-98.

Broadband communications in the European Union: myths and realities
Michalis, M. 2002. Broadband communications in the European Union: myths and realities. in: Columbus, F. (ed.) European economic and political issues New York, USA Nova Science Publishers.

Local competition and the role of regulation: the EU debate and Britain's experience
Michalis, M. 2001. Local competition and the role of regulation: the EU debate and Britain's experience. Telecommunications Policy. 25 (10-11), pp. 759-779.

Local access competition and local loop unbundling
Michalis, M. and Ruhle, E.O. 2001. Local access competition and local loop unbundling. Multimedia und Recht. 4 (1), pp. 23-32.

Creative destruction in European internet industries and policies
Hills, J. and Michalis, M. 2001. Creative destruction in European internet industries and policies. in: McKnight, L.W., Vaaler, P.M. and Katz, R.L. (ed.) Creative destruction: business survival strategies in the global Internet economy Cambridge, USA MIT Press. pp. 73-94

The internet: a challenge to public service broadcasting?
Hills, J. and Michalis, M. 2000. The internet: a challenge to public service broadcasting? International Communication Gazette. 62 (6), pp. 477-493.

Restructuring regulation: technological convergence and European telecommunications and broadcasting markets
Hills, J. and Michalis, M. 2000. Restructuring regulation: technological convergence and European telecommunications and broadcasting markets. Review of International Political Economy. 7 (3), pp. 434-464.

Access issues: operational support systems and regulation
Michalis, M. 1999. Access issues: operational support systems and regulation. Telecommunications Policy. 23 (6), pp. 481-493.

European Union broadcasting and telecoms: towards a convergent regulatory regime?
Michalis, M. 1999. European Union broadcasting and telecoms: towards a convergent regulatory regime? European Journal of Communication. 14 (2), pp. 147-171.

Telecommunications in the Czech Republic: the privatisation of SPT Telecom
Michalis, M. and Takla, L. 1997. Telecommunications in the Czech Republic: the privatisation of SPT Telecom. in: Ryan, D.J. (ed.) Privatization and competition in telecommunications: international developments Westport, CT Praeger. pp. 89-102

Technological convergence: regulatory competition. The British case of digital television
Hills, J. and Michalis, M. 1997. Technological convergence: regulatory competition. The British case of digital television. Policy Studies. 18 (3-4), pp. 219-237.

Digital television and regulatory issues: the British case
Hills, J. and Michalis, M. 1997. Digital television and regulatory issues: the British case. Communications et Strategies. 27 (3), pp. 75-101.

Whither Greek telecommunications policy? Politics, the state and telecommunications policy in Greece
Michalis, M. 1994. Whither Greek telecommunications policy? Politics, the state and telecommunications policy in Greece. European Journal of Communication. 9 (4), pp. 441-459.

Permalink - https://westminsterresearch.westminster.ac.uk/item/q4q69/community-networks-and-sustainability-a-survey-of-perceptions-practices-and-proposed-solutions


Share this
Tweet
Email